Day 64: Finishing & Beginning (Acts 28:31)
…proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance.
I am sitting here asking myself about what God has revealed to me, or maybe, what God has even said to me.
After all, one reflection earlier I asked you, “What have I learned about following Jesus for my own walk—am I different, and is God speaking to me to do one thing that I have not been doing?”
For me, to answer this question takes listening.
This spiritual discipline of listening to God is evaporating in our world. Today we are surrounded by not just noise, but constant messages flooding our senses, and much of it tugs at our curiosity.
I do it best with a cup of coffee, in the morning, with the TV turned off. But it also takes me simply sitting, not just writing about Scripture.
I am going to share with you my answer in the next line of text…but one reflection earlier I asked for yours, and I would love to hear them.
Let me again ask you to pause, reflect, and share.
My thoughts are in two opposite directions—this is nothing new—please pray for my wife, she lives with this dialectically opposed mind!
Those two thoughts have to do with my EXTERNAL ACTIONS and my INTERNAL LIFE.
In regards to the EXTERNAL ACTIONS, my mind goes to Peter, Stephen, Philip, Paul, and all the others who are quite frankly amazing heroes of the faith—they are a bit intimidating to me—can I even approach that sort of behavior?
Before I (and you) say, “No”, let’s remind ourselves about the opening thought of “Living with Certainty”. Reading about Peter, Stephen, Philip, Paul and all the others in Acts is reading about people who are living with the certainty that Jesus from Nazareth is the long-awaited Messiah of God. We see in the text how they, in their context, lived with this certainty.
The challenge for me, a guy who runs around being certain about Jesus, is wondering if my life reflects this certainty. In life, we have these day-to-day real concerns (family, kids, work, etc.). These concerns take our energy and our focus.
Living with Certainty in Jesus means focusing 100% of our lives through His Life.
If you are not certain about Jesus, I understand. I suggest you go back and read the Gospel of John. If you need a help, and think my style of writing helps, here is a link. I write that because the next bit is going to sound terribly, well, religious.
My second thought is about my INTERNAL LIFE. To live a life where I am certain about Jesus, means I need to be deeply connected to God: Father-Son-Holy Spirit. It requires discipline in those time-tested practices of prayer, worship, study, service, and fellowship. It means bringing my imperfect self to an imperfect local church that is filled with imperfect people—all of whom are seeking to know, serve, and love God.
It is hard.
Yet imagine, imagine if you and I lived with the certainty of the people we just spent weeks studying—wouldn’t that be great!